In his new book, Ed Wheatley calls St. Louis ‘America’s best sports town’
Sports historian and author Ed Wheatley contends that St. Louis is “America's best sports town” in his new book, “St. Louis Sports Memories,” available now through Reedy Press.
“I mean, yeah, big cities like New York, Boston, Chicago — they've had a diverse history, but when you start investigating this diverse history that this city has, it's so many sports,” he told St. Louis on the Air. “Many things have happened here, and it's not only teams and winning championships. It's much more than that. It's the individual athletes themselves and the impact on diversity. All these firsts in women's sports happened here in St. Louis, [and for] the African American community.”
St. Louis firsts for women athletes include the “Golden Girls of tennis,” Justina Bricka, Carol Hanks and Mary-Ann Eisel, who played in the 1960s.
“These three women … [did some] outstanding stuff. They played at Wimbledon, the U.S. Open, the French Open, the Australian Open,” he said. Also, “St. Louis had the first woman owner of a major league team. We also had the first woman owner of an NFL team.”
Wheatley discussed those firsts, and shared many names, events and places even the most devout St. Louis sports fans can’t identify, on Tuesday's St. Louis on the Air.
“St. Louis on the Air” brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. The show is produced by Miya Norfleet, Emily Woodbury, Danny Wicentowski, Elaine Cha and Alex Heuer. Avery Rogers is our production assistant. The audio engineer is Aaron Doerr. Send questions and comments about this story to firstname.lastname@example.org.